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Some ocean shipping rates collapsing, but real price relief is months away

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Prices in the most volatile segment of ocean shipping are collapsing, but top retailers like Walmart and Home Depot should not expect relief until the spring contract renegotiation season, industry experts said.

Spot rates, which cover anywhere from 10% to 40% of ocean container shipments and are considered a key indicator of the industry’s health, are in free fall as recession looms and the pandemic-fueled U.S. import bubble deflates.

The cost to send a container from Asia to the United States on the demand-sensitive spot market has tumbled more than 80% from its September peak above $20,000 for a 40-foot container, according to freight booking platform Freightos.

Major carriers like Mediterranean Shipping Co (MSC) and A.P. Moller-Maersk also are expecting delivery of hundreds of new container ships, which amplifies risk as carriers already have more ships than they need to handle shrinking demand.

BLOCKADE OF TAIWAN BY CHINA COULD COST WORLD ECONOMY OVER $2 TRILLION, REPORT FINDS

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
WMT WALMART INC. 144.95 -1.83 -1.25%
HD THE HOME DEPOT INC. 317.81 +0.28 +0.09%
AMKBY A.P. MØLLER-MÆRSK A/S 11.15 -0.07 -0.62%

“There is sense of…

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